PRESIDENT Samia Suluhu Hassan has called on the international community to remove all economic sanctions slapped on Burundi to allow the country to make economic progress and serve its people well.
She also said Tanzania would support Burundi on its move to join the Southern African Development Community (SADC).
The Head of State made the statements in Bujumbura, Burundi during her two-day state visit aimed at cementing further the existing bilateral ties and introducing herself to her Burundian counterpart, Evariste Ndayishimiye.
She also commended President Ndayishimiye for his continued efforts in transforming Burundi by fighting corruption, maintaining peace and security and enhancing diplomatic relations with foreign countries as well as international organisations.
“In a short period since he took office, President Ndayishimiye has also led the country on social and economic transformations,” said President Samia on Friday when she attended a state banquet organised by her host, the Burundian Head of State.
"Following these efforts I call upon countries and international institutions which are yet to remove sanctions imposed on Burundi to do so to allow the country make progress in development," she said.
For his part, President Ndayishimiye commended his Tanzanian counterpart on her ongoing efforts to bring development in the country since she assumed office in March this year.
He also consoled President Samia following the fire incident which occurred at the Kariakoo Market in Dar es Salaam that also serves traders from other East African countries.
“The loss was not for Tanzanian traders only, but also their Burundian counterparts,” he said.
He said trade volume between the two countries has increased to 201bn/- in 2019, up from 83.9bn/- that was recorded in 2015.
So far Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC) has registered a total of 18 projects by Burundian investors worth 209bn US dollars. At least 3,544 Tanzanians have been employed in the projects registered by investors from Burundi.
Earlier in the day, the two leaders held official talks, where they agreed on a number of issues, including deepening the bilateral cooperation in trade, investment, agriculture, livestock, sports, arts and culture.
They also agreed to implement infrastructure projects that connect the two countries, in a grand move that will continue facilitating movement of people, goods and services.
The duo discussed the importance of building road and railway infrastructure that link the two countries, to continue facilitating movement of people, goods and services.
The infrastructure projects include upgrading of the Kasulu-Manyovu section in Tanzania and Rumonge-Gitaza road section in Burundi on the central corridor. Moreover, plans are in place for construction of a railway line from Uvinza in Tanzania to Msongati and Gitega in Burundi.
“This slot will be connected with the ongoing Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) line from Dar es Salaam to Kigoma,” said President Samia during a joint press conference on Friday afternoon.
Govt wants EACOP protected
From MEDDY MULISA in Misenyi
ENERGY Minister, Dr Medard Kalemani has called on Tanzanians in eight regions where the 1,445-km East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) will pass to protect the infrastructure and take advantage of the opportunities arising from the project.
Out of the 1,445 kms, Tanzania takes the lion's share, with about 1,147 kms, almost 80 per cent. About 10,000 to 15,000 Tanzanians will get employment, out of which 2,017 will be Kagera residents.
The oil pipeline will pass through eight regions, 24 districts and 134 wards. The respective regions include Kagera, Geita, Shinyanga, Tabora, Singida, Dodoma, Manyara and Tanga.
Dr Kalemani assured eligible people who were affected by the implementation of the project that they will be compensated by next one month.
He made the remarks yesterday during a sensitization seminar on EACOP project benefits held at Bunazi township, in Missenyi district.
"People affected by the implementation of the EACOP project will be paid compensation within one month. An evaluation made by the government had already been completed. However, people should avoid cheating, because this could lead to being prosecuted in court," he warned.
Minister Kalemani elaborated that Tanzania holds 15 per cent shares under the Hoima (Uganda)-Chongoleani (Tanga) oil pipeline while the government had already paid 259.96bn/- for implementation of the project.
He also directed the Energy, Water Utility Regulatory Authority (EWURA) to ensure that they reach people at regional level while registering companies locally owned by Tanzania citizens. The companies would get priority while considering tenders in the implementation of the EACOP project, he said.
In Kagera region, the pipeline will pass through 20 wards, 34 villages and 117 hamlets.
Dr Kalemani disclosed that so far about three components had been completed, namely geological, geophysical and geotechnical studies.
Under EACOP implementation, there will be four pumping stations on the Tanzanian side. One will be at Kyaka (Missenyi) in Kagera region, another at Singida and two others in Tanga. Also, there will be 17 camps, while two will be in Kagera region-one at Karambi village, in Muleba district and Kyaka village, in Missenyi district.
"This is a golden opportunity. We have a duty to protect the pipeline day and night. Let's all play our role effectively," he said.
The US dollar 3.5 billion oil pipeline would take three years to be completed (2024) stretching from Hoima, in Uganda to Chongeleani, Tanga while three international companies have been identified to do the job including Total (France), Tullow (UK) and CNOOC -China).